Advertising helps grow your business by connecting you with your customers. Before you start advertising, you should know the answers to several key questions so that you can cover all your bases and deliver a better experience to your customers. If you're struggling to get started or want to be sure that you have worked through each step, a media partner can help ensure that you're ready to advertise. Here are six key questions you should be able to answer before you start advertising.
1. Who is Your Target Audience?
Before you start advertising, you need to know who your target audience is. Where do they live? If you have a business that offers local services, you may want to focus on ads that will reach local customers.
What do they do? Does your target audience have specific hobbies or work in specific professions that need your business and your services?
Next, you need to know where you can find your target audience. How often do they watch TV? What channels do they watch? Are there specific programs that they tune in for? Do they consume OTT content? (Hint: the average American subscribes to approximately 3 streaming services, so chances are, your target audience uses those services regularly.)
Which social media channels does your target audience prefer? Around 81% of American adults have Facebook accounts, but many demographics, including Gen Z, spend more time on other platforms, including Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube.
Finally, you need to know where your target audience is along the buyer's journey. Are they ready to make a purchase, or do they still need more information to make a decision? By answering key questions about target audience, you can create ads that will better meet their needs.
2. What Problem Are You Solving?
Just as your products help solve a problem for your customers, your advertising efforts solve a problem for your business. Are you trying to raise brand awareness? Introducing a new product or service? Opening, closing, or moving a store? Do you want to increase overall sales, or is there a major sale or promotion going on?
Keep in mind that running a branding campaign will look very different from a campaign intended to raise awareness about a specific sale or promotion. Likewise, if you want to draw focus to a specific store, you may use different techniques and provide different information than if you intend for your ad to reach a wider target audience.
3. What Are Your Goals?
Follow the SMART method to create effective goals that will help you determine how you need to handle your advertising strategy. Do you know how much you want to see in sales from the campaign? Do you have a goal of how many followers you would like to reach? Are you trying to generate more leads? By clearly setting your goals before you start advertising, you accomplish two key things. First, it allows you to create campaigns based on those goals. Second, it allows you to track the success of your campaign.
4. What is Your Advertising Budget?
Your advertising budget will determine what you can afford as you create your ads. Does your budget accurately reflect your goals? Are you allotting enough of your budget for each piece of the advertising puzzle: the production for your television commercial or the creation of your social ads, for example? Does the amount that you're putting into your advertising budget allow you to create the ads needed to achieve your goals?
An inadequate budget can stop your campaign in its tracks and prevent you from achieving your goals. By working with a media partner, you can set a more effective ad budget and get a better idea of where to allot funds for maximum impact.
5. Where Will You Advertise?
Work closely with your media partner as you determine where you will advertise. Ask:
- What channels will your commercial run on?
- What times will your commercial air?
- How often will it air?
- Are you going to be integrating digital advertising into your plans?
- What platforms will your ads run on?
- When will your ads be posted?
A media partner can give you an idea of the most effective approach, including where you should position your ads to give you the best chance of reaching your target audience.
Before you start advertising, it's critical that you answer these key questions about your ad campaign. You need to know who your target audience is and where they spend their time, what goals you have for your campaign, and what size budget you have in place. A trusted media partner can help you develop a winning strategy and maximize the ROI of your advertising campaign.